Know How...

Feb 1st 2018

Know How... 367

CES for Your Car, Wrist, and Bottom

Alexa in the car, a smartwatch with month-long battery, and exercising in the office.

Although the show is no longer in production, you can enjoy episodes from the TWiT Archives.
Category: Help & How To

The toys from CES 2018 are starting to arrive in the studio and Patrick/Padre are ready to give you a first look! From Alexa in your vehicle, to a battery that charges your phone AND your car, to a smart watch that only needs to be charged once a month, and a way to exercise in the office, we've got the swag you need to see!

Roav Vivo ~$50

  • 2 x PowerIQ-equipped USB Ports (Automatically charges at the highest rate)
    • iPhone 7 in 2.2 hours instead of 3.2 hours
    • iPad mini in 3.6 hours instead of 7 hours
  • But the big feature is Amazon Voice Assistant
  • It connects to your Android/iOS phone with Bluetooth 4.1 -- AND then your phone connects to your car
  • It has dual MEMS microphones and a dedicated Noise reduction chip so that it can hear you in a noise car cabin

This enables:

  • Hands-free calling
  • Control over ANYTHING in your Amazon voice assistant network
  • 25,000 skills
  • Audio-enabled directions and phone functions


  • App
  • Audio Book

Splitsecnd (Split Second) $299

  • Emergency response device (Crash Detection and Response) (Lifetime Coverage)
  • 3G Connectivity
  • GPS with web-based dashboard
  • Integration with Amazon Voice Assistant
  • REAL-TIME location monitoring and geo-fencing
  • Location history
  • Battery backup (can't be stopped by cutting power in accident or theft)

Pi-Hole Woes

- Jason Brown

"I'm trying to get a better handle on how Pi-Hole works. My wife and I signed up for Hulu's ad-free option. Apparently, some shows aren't part of this agreement, so they give you an ad at the beginning and end of certain shows.

We just started a show that was supposed to give us those beginning/end ads, but ended up going straight to the show.

So, do we think that was because of a glitch on Hulu, or did Pi-Hole just do it's job? Every browser-based ad-blocker always gave us a blank nag screen for 30 seconds. But that didn't happen this time. So it feels like the nature of 'ad-free Hulu ads' might be different than the normal ones.

There's so much going on with ad-blockers and anti-ad-blockers, that it's hard to keep up with. So I'd love it if someone more versed in the subject could provide a simple primer.

What I know (I think) is that ad-blockers only affect 3rd party ads. But natively hosted ads aren't typically affected. So is this some weird case where Hulu has such an indirect connection to the ads that I was able to skip them entirely?

I want to try to educate others about ad-blockers, and how different types of ads are affected. But I don't want to regurgitate misinformation."

How do Browser-Based Ad-Blockers work?

  • As content is loaded into a browser, it looks at the incoming page and removes (or replaces) known ad-scripts AND sites that are known to serve ads.
  • This means your ad-blocking experience will depend on them updating their script and site list.

How does Pi-Hole work?

  • It's not looking at scripts at all. (Not enough power)
  • It's only looking at the DNS requests coming from and computer configured to request sites THROUGH the Pi-Hole
  • This means it can't stop native requests (unless specifically black-listed)

Roav C2 Dash Cam ~$60

  • 1080p sensor with a 145 degree f2 wide-angle lens
  • WDR Sony Exmore IMX323 sensor with Wide Dynamic Range and nigh-vision capabilities
  • Steel frame for temp-resistance
  • Internal battery
  • 3" LCD screen
  • SD card slot
  • G-force sensor (for auto saving of accidents)
  • Looping function (1, 3, 5, 10 minutes --- autosaved in accident or when emergency recording pushed)
  • Auto recording (when there's power, it records)
  • Also records sound (can toggle on and off)
  • Parking monitor (can set it to stop recording when parked)

myCharge Adventure Jump Start ~$100

  • 6,600mAh
  • Has a single USB port for charging devices at up to 3.1amps
  • Includes a slide-out MicroUSB charging cable
  • Charges via a MicroUSB port (can do rapid recharging, 50% faster charging than standard battery banks)
  • Weighs 1.2 lbs
  • Also has a port for jump starting your CAR!
  • 12v 400A Peak, 200A constant jump start current.

Fly Away!

-- Neil Balch

"Hey all,

I just got a RTFQ Flip FCU as a part of the kh250 kit. I would really like to get some of the upgrade modules that they offer if you purchase the Flip standalone, but I don't want to have to buy another unit. Is there another way to get just the Baro+Mag board, and Bluetooth board?"

Basic Flip FCU ~$15

  • Bare bones -- Keeps your craft in the air

MultiWii Pro EZ 3.0 ~$34

  • Barometer (Alt Hold)
  • Magnetometer (Heading Hold)
  • GPS Option
  • Bluetooth + LED + OLED Options
  • Telemetry support

Ahhh... Memories

-- Rud Dog

"Interesting question about compiling via Arduino IDE. Does the process of compiling a sketch create a binary and if so where does it store it?

Whenever you compile/upload, Sketch follows a process:

  1. Pre-Processing: All ".ino" files are concatenated together and the basic Arduino Library is added to the sketch. Prototypes for functions are added to the sketch.
  2. All "includes" are added to the sketch
  3. A .hex file of this compilation is uploaded to the Arduino Hardware

So what you have does NOT look like your code. It's a file filled with hex values that represent the machine-code version of your code.

It's then uploaded into the FLASH memory of your Arduino

Remember that all Atmel Chips have three types of memory:

Flash, SRAM, and EEPROM

  • Flash is non-volatile (It's where your hex code (and the bootloader) is stored)
  • SRAM is volatile. It's where the variables are stored
  • EEPROM is non-volatile. It's use addressable storage that persists (But has a limited number of writes)

Hey 3S (Be Weloop) ~$150

  • 1.28" Touch Screen
  • Weighs just 38g (Apple watch is 56 - 125 grams // Samsung Gear S3 is 60g)
  • Bluetooth connection to iOS and Android
  • 270mAh battery
  • GPS + AGPS for positioning information
  • IP68 (Waterproof to 50 meters)
  • Measures steps, distance, calories burned, floors climbed, active vs. passive minutes, heart rate.
  • Notifications for mail, social media apps, etc.
  • Lasts for up to a month on a single charge

Loctek Deskcize Pro $500

  • Sit-Stand desk... with an excercise bike
  • retractable wheels (with gravity lock)
  • magnetic resistance (much quieter that friction resistance)

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